Posts Tagged ‘ teaching ’

Define first, prove later

March 25, 2015
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This post by John Cook features a quote form a book “Calculus on Manifolds,” by Michael Spivak which I think was the textbook for a course I took in college where we learned how to prove Stokes’s theorem, which is something in multivariable calculus involving the divergence and that thing that you get where you […] The post Define first, prove later appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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New time unit needed!

March 18, 2015
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We need a time unit that’s bigger than a minute but smaller than an hour. I thought of it when writing this comment in which I referred to “2100 valuable minutes of classroom time” during the semester (that’s 75 minutes per class, twice a week, for 14 weeks). A minute of class time is pretty […] The post New time unit needed! appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and…

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Stock-and-flow and other concepts that are important in statistical modeling but typically don’t get taught to statisticians

March 12, 2015
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Bill Harris writes: You’ve written about causality somewhat often, and you, along with perhaps everyone who has done anything with statistics, have written that “correlation is not causation.” When you say that correlation is not causation, you seem to be pointing out cases where correlation exists but causality does not. While that’s important, there’s another […] The post Stock-and-flow and other concepts that are important in statistical modeling but typically…

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Divide and destroy in statistics teaching

March 8, 2015
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Divide and destroy in statistics teaching

A reductionist approach to teaching statistics destroys its very essence I’ve been thinking a bit about systems thinking and reductionist thinking, especially with regard to statistics teaching and mathematics teaching. I used to teach a course on systems thinking, with … Continue reading →

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“A small but growing collection of studies suggest X” . . . huh?

February 24, 2015
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Lee Beck writes: I’m curious if you have any thoughts on the statistical meaning of sentences like “a small but growing collection of studies suggest [X].” That exact wording comes from this piece in the New Yorker, but I think it’s the sort of expression you often see in science journalism (“small but mounting”, “small […] The post “A small but growing collection of studies suggest X” . . .…

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“Academics should be made accountable for exaggerations in press releases about their own work”

February 22, 2015
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Fernando Martel Garcia points me to this news article by Ben Goldacre: For anyone with medical training, mainstream media coverage of science can be an uncomfortable read. It is common to find correlational findings misrepresented as denoting causation, for example, or findings in animal studies confidently exaggerated to make claims about treatment for humans. But […] The post “Academics should be made accountable for exaggerations in press releases about their…

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Statistical Significance – Significant Problem?

February 20, 2015
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John Carlin, who’s collaborated on some of my recent work on Type S and Type M errors, prepared this presentation for a clinical audience. It might be of interest to some of you. The ideas and some of the examples should be familiar to regular readers of this blog, but it could be useful to […] The post Statistical Significance – Significant Problem? appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference,…

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Heroic Econometrics Teachers: Tom Rothenberg and Dennis Sargan

February 16, 2015
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I'm not sure why this popped into my head just now. There have been many fine graduate econometrics teachers/mentors; their armies of well-trained students now populate top universities.  But two seem to me to have transcended the rest, achieving ...

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“Peer assessment enhances student learning”

February 15, 2015
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Dennis Sun, Naftali Harris, Guenther Walther, and Michael Baiocchi write: Peer assessment has received attention lately as a way of providing personalized feedback that scales to large classes. . . . By conducting a randomized controlled trial in an introductory statistics class, we provide evidence that peer assessment causes significant gains in student achievement. The […] The post “Peer assessment enhances student learning” appeared first on Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference,…

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Discussion with Steven Pinker connecting cognitive psychology research to the difficulties of writing

February 9, 2015
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Following up on my discussion of Steven Pinker’s writing advice, Pinker and I had an email exchange that cleared up some issues and raised some new ones. In particular, Pinker made a connection between the difficulty of writing and some research findings in cognitive psychology. I think this connection is really cool—I’ve been thinking and […] The post Discussion with Steven Pinker connecting cognitive psychology research to the difficulties of…

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